The Bears (9-11, 4-6 Southland Conference) led by 10 before Eric Hunter scored six straight points to get Nicholls State within 75-71 with 1:45 remaining. Amin Torres' 3-pointer made it 78-76 with 12 seconds left, and after a free throw by Crawford, Torres had a chance to tie from behind the arc with two seconds left, but missed.
Hunter had 36 points and 11 rebounds for the Colonels (6-14, 4-6). Torres had 10 points and Dantrell Thomas 11 rebounds for Nicholls State.
Leading scorer Jarvis Garner did not play for Central Arkansas while serving the second game of a two-game suspension for breaking team rules.
Indiana guard James Blackmon Jr., who averaged 15.8 points in 13 games before being injured last season, has withdrawn from the NBA draft.
Isaiah Briscoe has decided to withdraw from the NBA draft and will return to Kentucky for his sophomore season. Marcus Lee intends to transfer.
The Big 12/SEC Challenge will again feature Kansas and Kentucky, this time at Rupp Arena. That's not the only exciting matchup in next season's midseason conference showdown.
|Stephen F. Austin||18-0||-||28-6|
|Sam Houston State||12-6||6||18-16|